How Do You Wire a 220-Volt Circuit?


Quick Answer

To install a 220-volt circuit in your home, you have to connect it to the circuit breaker panel with the help of a licensed electrician. Unlike 110-volt circuits, simply flipping the breaker switch will not de-energize the circuit, so it has to be connected live. Making a mistake in this could prove fatal. You have to choose the correct length of wire and an outlet as close to the panel as possible to minimize voltage drop.

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Full Answer

Circuit breakers connect to 220-volt circuits with two-pole switches. These are sets of two switches that have been wired together to accommodate two leads. These circuits have two hot wires that have alternating voltage, as well as a ground. Additions to the electrical code require appliances like stoves and dryers to have a four-wire connection that includes a neutral wire.

If an outlet doesn't exist, you will need to cut space out for one in the drywall. Consult an electrician for details on outlet size, and make your measurements. When you select wire to connect to the breaker panel, ensure that it is rated to carry 20 percent more current than the circuit uses. For example, a 40-amp circuit wire should have a 50-amp maximum load.

When buying the new circuit breaker, outlet and wire, ensure that they have matching ratings. If they don't, you risk property damage and injury.

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